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Thread: Windows Movie Maker & .MOV File Frustration (includes a rant)

  1. #1

    Default Windows Movie Maker & .MOV File Frustration (includes a rant)

    I've been using computers for forty years and PCs for thirty two. Almost all my friends consult with me when they have computer questions/problems. I have written over 50 programs and sell one world wide, with many free utilities in wide use.

    <RANT ON>The Video area is a total nightmare. I only need to do a short video about every six months to a year. Every time I do it I have to relearn this arcane stuff. For some totally incomprehensible reason, the most widely used novice video editor, Windows Movie Maker, refuses to recognize the video format most widely generated by digital cameras -- .MOV . INCREDIBLE ! That simple fact alone demonstrates how utterly and hopelessly screwed up the video area is.

    I relearn this every six months, then hunt down the procedure for converting .MOV to WMV or AVI or something Movie Maker in not too haughty to recognize. Last time I used something called MP4Cam2AVI. This time it converted the .MOV files to .avi. They appear to be the correct file size, and when I run these .avi files they run for the correct time, BUT, the screen is black throughout. Before changing to MP4Cam2AVI, and after an unreasonably long web hunt, I dug up something called RAD. RAD worked once or twice, Then in some way I can no longer remember RAD quit working; forcing me to dig up MP4Cam2AVI. Of course, MP4Cam2AVI won't convert to Movie Maker's native format WMV -- again, probably the two most common formats for editing with .MOV being probable the format most people need to convert -- thanks. And now, as explained above, MP4Cam2AVI has stopped converting to .avi in a usable form <RANT OFF>

    So, my question is:

    Is there no free video editor that will accept the ubiquitous .MOV files directly, without whining, and allow them to be edited using features roughly equal to Movie Maker?

    This never ending frustration is becoming intolerable. I assume if I bought an expensive video editor it would probably recognize MOV and work more than three times in a row. But, since I'm retired (read, tight budget) and only convert one 2-3 minute video every year to six months it's not a reasonable investment, plus I'd probably have to buy it again and again as we change from XP to Vista to Win7 to Win8, etc.

  2. #2

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    You could get a free trail of "Sony Vegas" I am pretty sure it would recognise .mov files but wait for someone to add to this thread with more experience with Vegas.
    However as it is free nothing lost really ..... I take it 30 days would be long enough for you to get the work done you want???

    If not you might be wise investing in vegas (ie) about 30 of amazon.co.uk new
    I have used and still do (WMM 2.1) (XP) I have imported problematic files in the past my simply changing the file extension to .mpg
    works sometimes but not all the time never tried it with .mov files so can't say for sure. works with .vro & .vob

    Worth a try my friend

    A great resource for everything (WMM) unless you already know is Pappa John's site Windows Movie Maker

    You might find helpful info on there.

    Best of luck ..... it sounds like you are very experienced with computers and know what you are doing.


  3. #3
    Join Date
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    If your footage is HD then you need to download "Windows Live MM" onto a Win7 PC - so I'm suspecting yr Vids are a lower quality. (not that it matters, really!). However, it also points to the PC spec and for most editors you need plenty of processor power.
    Unfortunately Vegas Studio is a pain to learn, but does have "Show me how" tutorials which you can pull-down within the program (But you need to open a blank/New to follow the instructions- DYOR). Fortunately Vegas Studio allows this.
    ALSO: there are helpful suggestions (& Tutorials) on this Site.....covering Vegas Studio...It is a very powerful program with plenty of effects if/when you want them . . .

    Certainly VS is cheap and the Production Suite also comes with a 1hr DVD Tutorial, but as with most of these things it's really not "that" easy.....despite your experience with a PC - that is assumed. It also includes a decent Audio Editor "Sound Forge" - which I find useful for creating sound FX from recorded stuff.

    My experience was that I tried WLMM for my HD clips and gave up - it was so restricting . . . . so I bought v10. SVPS and it is fantastic value - now about 25 for v11 which inicludes Animated Text - you don't (yet) need the 3D camera input, but the 50p import should cover whatever camera you buy next.

    Another suggestion is to create your own "How to" video, on DVD. That way, you know what to do "next year" knowing that it covers those bits you might otherwise miss.


    Hope that helps . . . .


    PS I suspect MS doesn't include MOV because it's (probably) an Apple format (anyone??)
    Last edited by vidmanners; 02-27-2012 at 02:16 AM.

  4. #4

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    The video is HiDef. It was made on a Nikon 5100. That's a recent DSLR. I am running Windows Movie Maker on a Win7 machine. It has reasonable processor power and 8GB of memory. I don't think it's bogging down. The converters just aren't working.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by i_am_jim View Post
    The video is HiDef. It was made on a Nikon 5100. That's a recent DSLR. I am running Windows Movie Maker on a Win7 machine. It has reasonable processor power and 8GB of memory. I don't think it's bogging down. The converters just aren't working.

    Since you need to handle videos every six months, why don't you decide to buy a converter, which can save you out of the trouble. I'm using video converter to transcode footages from Sony and Canon to avi and wmv, sometimes mp4 for editing or playback on my tablet. It is great and I have not met any problem till now. And it is the fatest converter I've used. You can try the demo version and see wehther it can deal with your problem. It is not so expensive. Just $35. You can decide whether you need it or not.

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    I'm not sure OP was sorted . . if his footage is .mov and WMM doesn't recognise it how does he Edit it ?

    Editors are somewhat difficult to learn and those that are easy are very difficult to get right (due to oversimplifications)...... also, as I pointed out earlier, for HD OP needs to download Windows Live Movie Maker.

    Is that "converter" the one advertised at the top of page, by chance?

    The suggestion of conversion is good, if only things were that easy. I suspect there will be a loss of quality - at least in an Editor like Vegas Studio you get to keep the format right up to the last moment, that way (my understanding) the best quality is being used for the edits.

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